By Lexi Chan – Entertainment Correspondent
Korean Pop – or K-pop – is a musical genre that has helped shaped modern Korean pop culture in the last 20 years, with strong emphasis placed on its catchy pop tunes, avant-garde visuals and “perfect” Asian beauty.
The popular music genre has expanded beyond South Korea to gain huge popularity in neighbouring countries and territories, including Japan, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore and Malaysia but has, more recently, received more attention in the USA and UK. Fans – both East Asian and non-East Asian alike – in the western world are increasing in numbers as the allure of a completely new musical style and popstar look differs greatly from our own.
29-year-old G-Dragon – real name Kwon Ji-yong, is one of K-pop’s biggest stars out there right now and is considered one of the most influential music and fashion icons in South Korea and even in China. As a founding member of boy band Big Bang in 2006, G-Dragon, along with his four bandmates, soon became known as “Kings of K-pop” and they are widely credited for the spread of it around the world. With countless music awards under his belt, including two World Music Awards, 22 number one songs as either the artist or songwriter and more than 140 million records sold – and that’s just with Big Bang – G-Dragon is a tour de force that shows no sign of slowing down.
Now he has embarked on his second solo world tour, Act III: M.O.T.T.E (Moment of Truth The End) World Tour, which began in June and will be the first time he takes his tour outside of Asia, with dates scheduled in for the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, The Netherlands, France and Germany. And on 23 and 24 September, he will be performing in Birmingham and London, respectively.
The tour is in support of his self-titled EP “Kwon Ji Yong”, his fourth solo album overall. The album was preceded by the number one lead single “Untitled, 2014”, became his best-selling album in the US, the fastest-selling album in China and he was the first artist to top the Japanese digital album chart. It also topped the Worldwide iTunes Album Chart when it reached number one in 46 countries. He has stated the concept behind this EP was to give fans an insight to Kwon Ji-yong the person and distance himself from the G-Dragon stage persona he created for himself, making this body of work his most personal and most critically-acclaimed so far.
Genting Arena in Birmingham
The tour has been brought to his fans in the UK by Genting Group, the Malaysian company that has set up Genting Casinos around the world (there are 47 alone in the UK) and owns Genting Arena in Birmingham in collaboration with one of the largest promoter of Chinese and East Asian parties in Britain, Kream Entertainment.
Kream Entertainment have hosted numerous parties aimed at the East Asian community in Birmingham over the years and have also organised an after-show party at Genting’s Resorts World. Tickets for the highly anticipated show in Birmingham are selling out fast but are still available online and from their promoters.
Ticket prices are as follows:
Seating C – sold out
Seating B – £86
Seating A – £118
Standing – £162
Advance tickets for the after-party are £10, but free if you also purchase a concert ticket from them. They also offer VIP Booth tickets for queue jump with your very own private booth and waitress at £20 each.
After his previous One of a Kind World Tour only had 27 dates and visited 13 cities in 8 countries but still attracted half a million fans, this bigger tour will surely surpass those numbers by far and is set to further solidify his status as a major influencer in the global takeover of K-pop. It could even bring him more recognition in the UK where both British and International East Asian artists are still missing from our music scene.